After a few massive setbacks, Rivian is buoyed by another round of financing.
Rivian - a young electric vehicle company that stands perhaps the best chance of taking a bite out of Tesla's outsize market share - has no plans of ever going public. The startup has instead relied on closed, private investment rounds to pay the bills and keep the lights on, attracting sizable investments from some big-name companies, Ford and Amazon being among them.
Now, Rivian's just finished another investment round as it tries to stay afloat despite some major setbacks, including Ford's cancellation of a Rivian-developed electric Lincoln crossover and a massive delay to its planned December start of production.
In the latest round, Rivian took in some $2.5 billion in financing from players like hedge fund Coatue, Soros Fund Management LLC, Fidelity Management and Research Company, and Baron Capital Group. Amazon apparently also doubled-down on its bet, kicking in another undisclosed amount. That makes perfect sense, given that Rivian is already nearing completion of a range of electric delivery vans for Amazon Prime.
In a statement, CEO RJ Scaringe said Rivian's teams "are working hard to ensure our vehicles, supply chain and production systems are ready for a robust production ramp up" as the company prepares to launch the Prime delivery van, plus its own R1T pickup truck and R1S SUV, in 2021.
"We are grateful for the strong investor support that helps enable us to focus on the execution of our products," he says.
$2.5 billion amounts to a big investment round, far outpacing the $1.3 billion in funding Rivian secured last December, but it's perhaps appropriate for a company of Rivian's stature and credibility. Beside the three aforementioned battery-electric vehicle models, Rivian also hopes to generate revenue by licensing and selling its vertically compact "skateboard" EV architecture to other firms, and the company's unique battery module design and shockingly-capable powertrain are compelling enough that we suspect they'll have a few takers.